The humane movement needs an organization like The Humane Society of the United States -- which fights the big battles for animals, works to professionalize the field of animal care and advocacy, and performs functions indispensable for our cause, such as disaster response, national advertising, or developing a cadre of experts in the many disciplines that intersect with animal welfare.
A story recently came my way of a lucky dog, Loui, who was adopted through The Shelter Pet Project. This public awareness project, launched last fall and sponsored by The HSUS, the Ad Council, and Maddie's Fund in partnership with the entire animal welfare community, urges would-be pet parents to make shelters their first stop when adding a pet to the family. It's the first animal-related cause supported by the Ad Council and includes TV, radio, print, outdoor and online ads that have been distributed to more than 33,000 media outlets.
In order to solve the problem of euthanasia in shelters, we need to adopt more animals to loving homes, and attacking the stigma associated with animals in shelters is one of the best ways to do it. That's the central aim of The Shelter Pet Project.
The way Loui arrived in his new home is the perfect example of how this unprecedented advertising campaign -- the biggest-ever in our movement -- can help local shelters and rescue groups achieve their mission of protecting animals, boost pet adoptions, and ultimately help eliminate the euthanasia of healthy and treatable animals. Please continue to help us spread the word about the PSAs.
From Loui's new family:
We were watching TruTV and saw one of the Shelter Pet Project spots. We thought it was fresh and interesting, so we went to the website. From there we were interested in a dog that we saw, so looked at the profile.
After we read about his history, embedded collar, and [being] seriously underweight, my wife called the number listed. It was 9 p.m. on a Sunday but they answered. The person was local (metro Washington, D.C.) but said that the dog was located in Arkansas. We were put in contact with BoxAR Rescue and from there were able to make all the arrangements to get Loui to us.
A year prior we adopted another lab/rottie mix female from a local animal shelter. She is the most loving and wonderful animal that could ever be. So after having Lexi we knew Loui had to be with us too.
Now with three labs and a Pomeranian, wow, they act like they have always been together, from day one. Loui is unique, LOL. He loves our 8-year-old daughter like crazy and I do believe the feelings are mutual.
This post originally appeared on Pacelle's blog, A Humane Nation.
Follow Wayne Pacelle on Twitter: www.twitter.com/humanesociety